Some days I think I would have liked to pursue a career in engineering - or at least what I envision engineering to be... figuring out how things work, making things, and fixing problems. Tomorrow I get to partially live out this dream by joining a group of professional engineers and architects traveling to Kibuye and working on creating a comprehensive long-term master plan for the hospital.
At this time Kibuye Hope Hospital has around 100 beds, but in order to create adequate opportunity for teaching medical and nursing students, as well as for providing more medical care, the hope is to increase the bed capacity to around 300.
Many questions arise when such an endeavor is undertaken. For example, how much space does a hospital that size require? How much water would be needed, and where would we get that water? How about electricity... from where, and what about a back up generator system, and might there be options for solar, hydro, or wind energy? What building supplies are available, and what would be the cost for such a hospital expansion? And how do you do all this in such a way that would create an organized, practical, attractive, sustainable, and efficient hospital?
This is where Engineering Ministries International (EMI) comes in. EMI sends teams of volunteer professional engineers all around the world to work on projects such as this. In February of this year, an EMI team went to Kibuye Hospital to do some preliminary data collecting, and the group put together all kinds of useful renderings and diagrams such as these: